Save the gnomes you handsome platypus you!
Where´s My Water? is perhaps the biggest game we have failed to review here at TouchGen. All of us have played it, and it is one of the core iOS games you need to have experienced alongside Cut The Rope, Angry Birds and the Popcap catalogue. There is no wonder that it has received numerous nominations for game of the year among other big sites, and publications. The aim of the game is to makes sure that Swampy the crocodile gets to have a proper shower. Guiding water to the bath while collecting bath ducks, and solving some wicked physics puzzles made a big splash. The easy controls that are all about drawing in the mud to give the water paths made the game accessible to kids, but it still packed quite a challenge for adults as well.
Needless to say the formula behind Where´s My Water? is brilliant, and it was just a matter of time before a sequel, or spinoff would arrive. In this case it is a spinoff where characters from the Phineas and Ferb, and some tweaks to the basic objectives are introduced. Phineas and Ferb might be a show for kids, but the game is equally and at times even better suited for puzzle savvy adults.
The story revolves around Perry the platypus, and his mission to save the world. Actually the story isn’t important at all, but still sets a nice mood when the enemy is thwarted. It is also quite fun when the evil professor Dr. Doofenschmirtz taunts Perry for taking too long, or running out of water. Actually the evil doctor is correct in trash talking Perry because he gets stuck in the transportation pipes not even getting to head quarters for a briefing.
The gameplay revolves around water in all three shapes: liquid, solid ice and steam. The base form used is liquid water that flows down the tunnels you draw. Hot lasers, and lava can vaporize it into steam that flows upwards. Finally ice can be created by using the Cool-inator, and this is perhaps the coolest puzzles where you have to time the freezing perfectly. The set lasers are either on all the time, or controlled by tapping them. There are also manual water dispensers that you get to control. It might sound overwhelming when I tell you about all the different tools, and forms at your disposal. Rest assured everything is introduced in a moderate pace, and most puzzles rely on one or a maximum of two of these mechanics beyond the drawing of paths in the dirt.
The presentation is colourful, bright and fun. I get a kick out of playing the game, and it is really hard to put down. This is also the main problem with the game, as it is over far too soon. Even when I am aiming for all three gnomes on each level, and finding the scattered information about the various characters hidden in the dirt I manage to complete the entire game in less than four hours. This is exactly the same that happened when I played the first Cut The Rope. I had an amazingly good time for a couple of hours, and then I never played the game again. I fear the same will be true for Where´s My Perry? Sure there is a level pack promised in the game, and the original had extra level packs as IAP. Will I remember it, or feel inclined to play again knowing that I will probably clear all the new levels in an hour?
Having voice snippets from the show further helps setting it apart, as an own product instead of just a spinoff. I seldom think about Swampy, or his urge to take a bath when I play Where´s My Perry? and that is a good thing in my book.
I think we might see a new trend emerging for iOS gaming, and I think I like it. Instead of having straight sequels we get reskinned games with slightly new mechanics thrown in. Temple Run Brave was the first, and now Where´s My Perry? joins it in what might become a real trend.
The game comes with a lot of achievements through Game Center, and these have more lasting power than the game itself has. For the achievement collector these achievements can expand the playing time quite a bit. One thing that I think is missing is synced progress over devices using Game Center. Being a universal game I really think it should be a standard feature.
Where’s My Perry? is a brilliant physics puzzle that takes all the strengths of the original, and gives it a bit more personality using some of the characters from Phineas and Ferb. What the game might lack in length it makes up for in sheer fun, and satisfaction. Make sure to save it for a rainy day when you need to have your spirits lifted and brain stimulated, as it deserves more than being played casually waiting for the bus.
Where´s My Perry? $0.99 Universal for iPad/iPhone/iPod
Seller: Walt Disney